This Q&A covering questions about strata managers like can they live out of the state has been answered by Jordan Dinga, Abode Strata and Shelley Fitzgerald, Allsorts Strata Community.
Question: The strata manager for our new building was appointed by the developer and is located in the eastern states. He has no idea of the needs of the building. Surely this is not ideal.
I am a lot owner and resident in a new building (12 months old) and the strata manager is based somewhere in the eastern states. He has appeared once for the first AGM and never been seen since. The strata manager was chosen by the building developer, also based in the eastern states.
He has no idea of the building or the problems associated with a new building. He asks for photos to be sent to him of problems and has no idea of suitable providers of services eg gardeners.
Is it considered suitable to have a strata manager based in another state?
Answer: There is nothing that requires the Strata Manager to be in the same area or state as the property they are managing.
There is nothing that requires the Strata Manager to be in the same area or state as the property they are managing.
I would note however that the WA Strata Legislation is not the same as the Eastern States so it would beg the question as to what legislation they are using in relation to the management of your particular Strata Company.
It would be worth reviewing your bylaws to determine how long this Strata Manager has been appointed for, or if there is a contract in place. It may also be worth contacting the elected Council Members and discussing the concerns you have. Any changes will require the support and consent of other owners in the complex and the Councillors should be fully informed of any specific arrangements in place with the Strata Manager.
It would seem that there would be issues around appointing local contractors, liaising with contractors, and obtaining keys to access the site to carry out repairs and maintenance. The Elected Council Members should be the informed parties on these types of matters for the site.
If there are any future building defect matters to be attended to you may find that your Strata Manager has a conflict of interest in pursuing the builder, causing delays and further complications.
You have noted that the Strata Manager asks for photos of any reported problems and this would be the case with local service providers also. It is always best to try and quantify what the matter is before allocating work/investigation to a tradesperson. The difference with a local Strata Manager is that they would have knowledge of the local qualified professionals to arrange to attend and investigate.
We strongly recommend that you gather your information and conduct your discussions now to put your mind at rest, rather than leaving it until a problem arises.
This post appears in Strata News #314.
Question: We’ve been using a resident’s sweeper for our large common area for years. Our strata manager will no longer allow the use of the sweeper. No real reason has been given. Is that right?
We have a large common area which we have been using a mechanical non motorized sweeper for about eight years. The sweeper is owned by one of the residents.
We have recently been told by our strata manager that we can’t use the sweeper anymore. As well as the lot owners, the gardener was also using it and has been told she can’t use it anymore either.
I’m not quite sure why the Strata Manager has said no. All the information we have received is that it is strata law not to use the sweeper.
If this is strata law how can we, ‘the residents’, vote to again use the sweeper in this complex?
Answer: Your strata manager should really be providing the residents with more information and facilitating what the lot owners want.
There seems to be confusion about whether there is or isn’t a by-law specifically regarding the sweeper.
If there is a by-law, then the owners simply need a unanimous vote at a meeting to remove/amend the by-law. Then the council organises for someone to lodge this with Landgate.
If there isn’t a by-law there is nothing to say they can’t use it unless it is breaching any general by-law such as noise and nuisance. If this isn’t causing a problem to any owners then I don’t see a problem.
Your strata manager should really be providing the residents with more information and facilitating what the lot owners want.
This post appears in Strata News #232.
Please note this advice was provided prior to the proclamation of the new strata title amendments and will be updated in due course.
Have a question or something to add to the article? Leave a comment below.
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